Birdbrain Stuff

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Foxhill Park

Still Common Gull present but numbers dropping.
Several BH Gulls with hoods now BS
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Friday, February 23, 2007

Littlemoor Tawny Owls

About 2230hrs last night there were 2 calling Tawnys across the road in Littlemoor Park.

Today, 23 Feb the place was alive with calling and singing birds this morning, including:
4 Blackbird, 15 Redwing, Song Thrush, pr Mistle Thrush on GC. 6 Blue Tit, 4 Great Tit, pr Long-tailed Tit, 3 Chaffinch, 8 Greenfinch, 2 Pied Wagtail, 5 Robin, GSW. Met Barbara Wardman who had Grey Heron flyover. This habitat screams out for Lesser 'Pecker. I wish...

Also had singing Skylark at Corporal Lane.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

One for BOG

This was a surprise: while walking down the access way to Forster Square Rlwy Stn at 1225hrs, I heard honking sounds reminiscent of Cranes. Discounting this species naturally, I looked at this guy with an MP3 player. Then I heard the sound again so I looked up; a pair of Whooper Swan were low overhead, heading in the Shipley direction! What a way to get a year, in fact a few years tick.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Foxhill Today

20/02/2007 Lunchtime
Foxhill Park
4 Singing Robins
2 Singing Dunnocks
Several m Blackbirds
12 BH Gulls
2 Pied Wagtails
3 Stock Doves >W
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Sunday, February 18, 2007


What a cracking photo this would have been of this pair of Stonechats if I could have got closer,or better still, if Sean had taken it.
This was Fly Flatts this morning. Another strange sighting there was a Gt Spotted Wdpecker flying
low over the water. BS
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Quiet Soil Hill

Given the conditions, I would have lost money today saying birds would be reasonably abundant on the hill from hell.

13 Skylark, pr Mallard, Grey Heron, 4 Linnet and Chris King, who reported 20 Linnet and a probable Twite prior to our meeting. Good to see you Chris, nice to put a face to names. I found a pile of untouched seed at the SE corner, so once again saw no point in laying mine down. This was at 1133 hours Brian, were you the culprit, or does it look like it just isn't being touched nowadays?

Also present were 3 Roe Deer and a Weasel.

Queensbury had 2 Skylark by Old Guy Rd, 3 Pied Wagtail throughout, a Grey Heron and possible Meadow Pipit at Mountain and the White Crow nr my hovel.

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Nowt to do wi birds

Do you remember Queensbury Motor Spares when it was a papershop Nigel in the 60s or was this before your time.
I used to used to have a morning and evening paper round from Mrs Rushworths papershop.This was before the traffic lights were up but with the amount of traffic then you didnt need any. BS
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A touch of spring

17/02/2007 Several Dunnocks up singing, also Robins and Blackbirds
Apart from the Collared Doves now nest building, 2 pr Magpies are nest building at Foxhill and
1pr Blackbirds.
1pr Magpies were also seen nest building by Bankfield Museum, Boothtown today. BS
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Another Tawny Owl

A Tawny Owl was calling from the bottom end of Old Thornton Rd on Friday night, approx 2210 hrs.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

White Crow

The White Crow was perched prominently and calling this morning, just across the road from my house. This bird must be over 7-1/2 years old by now, based on the assumption that it was a first year bird when I first encountered it back in 2001.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Queensbury today

Foxhill Park , lunch time
15 BH Gull
9 Common Gull, winter numbers now dropping.
Sev singing Robins and Dunnocks
4 Gt Tit, 2 Coal Tit, sev Blue Tit on feeder by park
18 House Sparrows, 2 m Blackbirds, 1 Dunnock, 2 Blue Tits in garden
Nigels reported Collared Doves still nest building.
Report of Tawny Owl in Station Rd garden first light. BS

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Man on a mission

Saw this well known birding character heading for Soil Hill today !
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11/02/2007 1530hrs.
Inspired by Nigels report on the park thought Id take a quick look although it was a bit late in the afternoon.
Sev Tit flocks, Blue,Great,Coal and LT.
1 Green Wdpecker
3 Jays
Sev Fieldfare and Redwing BS
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Queensbury tour

11/02/2007 a.m.
Ringby top ,Swalesmoor
14 Skylark
53 LBB Gull
18 Magpie

Slack End, Swalesmoor
21 Chaffinch
4 Greenfinch
1 Wren

Soil Hill
11 Twite
4 Linnet
7 Skylark
4 Goldies
Pheasant tracks leading up to seed
Got seed down.

Report from KM of 26 Skylark on SH the day before the snow came. BS

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Winter hits Queensbury

This was the view in Foxhill Park this afternoon, plenty snow and fog.
Needless to say, no birds. BS
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Friday, February 09, 2007


If they think thats a serious fall of snow down south they want to come have a look at Queensbury.
This isnt this year of course, yet! BS
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Thursday, February 08, 2007

Queensbury today

Roper Lane.... Report of 1 Snipe flying over road near Raggalds.
Foxhill park.....Report of 1 Little Owl just after dark yesterday.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Calderdale Birds

Calderdale Birds
Test to see if this goes on Calder birds


25 Redwing, Fieldfare, Goldcrest, GSW, 2 Chaffinch, several Greenfinch, Goldfinch, Jay. 4 Stock Dove below Qby Golf Club. I took a walk to Shelf Moor area to inspect the Lapwing roost at High Cross Lane - nada, zilch, nichts, nowt. 3 years back I used to get 200 birds on a good day.

Now for some humiliation. Brian, those mystery birds with the head of a Cirl Bunting and a pure white belly with a few Spot Fly like streaks, ahem, cough, er - Redwing! The sun was directly on them and it highlighted the belly and altered the head pattern, also made them look smaller. Better shamed than have people thinking I was throwing in a couple of escaped stringers, methinks.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Tawny Owl

One of the rewards for the rigours of moving house: Tawny Owl calling from Littlemoor Park early am. I cannot recall hearing this sound in the nigh on 7 years I lived at Springfield.

Monday, February 05, 2007

All Change

A different day to Saturday up at t'hill. After considerable searching, I conclude the Snow Bunting has flown, along with the bulk of the Skylark too. A quiet session revealed 1 Skylark, 2 Grey Partridge, 20 Linnet (which wouldn't morph into Twite despite my best efforts).

Raggalds did have a good showing of 45 Fieldfare and 12 Redwing mixed in with a Starling flock. There were mebbe 2/3 Long-tailed Tit heard at Foxhill and I got Grey Wagtail close overhead 30 yards from home.

Sunday, February 04, 2007


SNOW BUNTING. Id like to say that I took this photo but Im too honest. It was taken and kindly sent to me by Sean Gray who said I could put it on the blog. For more amazing photos like this visit BS
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Soil Hill

Soil Hill Feeding Station
04/02/2007 1500hrs
No sign of Snow Bunting but 3 scrambling motorbikes didnt help.
1 Skylark
8 Fieldfare
1mGoosander >W
Report that Snow Bunting was present this a.m.

Fly Flatts this morning was quiet with the usual 4 Twite
1pr Stonechat
2 Goldeneye
Good move of 150 LBB Gulls >W
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Saturday, February 03, 2007

One of those better days

Spot the Snow Bunt. A very distant shot through camera only.
Better than nowt, just.
Soil Hill 03/02/2007 14545-1500hrs
1 f Snow Bunting. Thanks for call Nigel.
18 Linnet
38 PF Geese >W
1 near heart attack when a cock pheasant took off from nearly under my foot.

Also.. 25 PF Geese >W over Windybank top at 1400 hrs. BS
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What a Spiffing Day

Arrived at Soil Hill to a singing Little Owl and then 8 Twite, of which 2 males were also singing loudly. A strange birder (well, aren't we all?) asked me if I had any luck, so I knew something else was about; cue Snow Bunting alighting on top of rocks where seed is laid in SE corner.

The other birders had travelled from Stockport for the Shorelark and picked up the Snow Bunting, courtesy of KM, I do believe. Needless to say they were bound for the American tourist at Bingley and then the Knaresborough counterpart.

Bruce and Darryl turned up after the SB was put on the Calderdale text grapevine; the bird did fly overhead calling, which is the last time I saw it. While we were conversing, the Twite flock magically increased to 12 birds and further down the hill, I got the Stonechat pair. Also present were 6/7 Skylark, with 2 Blackbird, 4 Fieldfare and a Redwing further down in Perseverance Rd. Surprisingly, no Meadow Pipit were present. On the way back, I picked up 21 Common Gull at Raggalds and 5 Long-tailed Tit at Mountain.

Typical! Nice day so the car breaks down.

Due to a broken starter motor, birding venues were limited to where I was prepared to walk to. Shibden Head is closest so that beats Soil Hill 2 points to 1. So, I wandered down to Shibden Head and did my usual lap.

Loads of the common woodland birds making the most of the warm, sunny conditions. No Redwing or Fieldfare though, despite the heavy crop of berries on some of the holly. 9 Common Gull were in the fields below Long Lane and the Jackdaw roost had about 50+ individuals. Difficult to count because a female Sparrowhawk spooked them into flight. Saw the male Sparrowhawk latter too having a go at a couple of Jays. Heard a Great Spotted Woodpecker drumming (early isn't it?). Heard 2 Green Woodpeckers calling and heard a Tawny Owl hooting. I was beginning to think I didn't need binoculars until I saw a Little Owl whilst making a distant scan of the field below Long Lane.

Turned out nice again!

Friday, February 02, 2007

Foxhill Today

02/02/2007 Lunchtime
Foxhill Park.
Small flock of Gt Tits around edge of park which is unusual.
f Sparrowhawk in tree
2 Siskin >W
28 Common Gull
5 BH Gull
No sign of any PF Geese over since Tues.
NK says he could be off the air for a while due to a phone line blunder ! BS